Help for Carers
The theme of Carers Week 2019 (10 - 16 June) is 'Getting Carers Connected' - to advice and information, to services, to friends and family, to other carers and to technology.
If you are caring for someone, make sure that you are receiving all the help that is available to you through benefits, grants and other support.
Turn2us has a specific Your Situation information section for carers, where you can find out more information on benefits, grants and other resources.
To check what benefits you might be entitled to quickly and easily, you can use the Turn2us Benefits Calculator.
Benefits you may be able to claim include:
Carer's Allowance - if you care for someone for at least 35 hours a week and the person you care for is getting a qualifying disability benefit.
Universal Credit Carer Element - Unlike Carer's Allowance where you are prevented from claiming if your net earnings are above a certain level (£123 per week for 2019/20), for the Carers Element your level of earnings does not prevent you from claiming. However, as the Carers Element is a part of Universal Credit, which is means-tested, your earnings and other income will affect whether you can get this and how much Universal Credit you are entitled to.
Pension Credit - is a means-tested benefit for people on a low income who have reached the Pension Credit qualifying age. If you are in a mixed age couple where one of you is below Pension Credit age, you will not be able to claim it, unless you qualified before 15 May 2019, and get your claim in before 13 August 2019. A mixed aged couple who doesn't qualify for Pension Credit could claim Universal Credit instead.
Carer's Credit - carers can be ‘credited’ with Class 3 national insurance contributions to help them qualify for other benefits which they may not otherwise have been eligible. This is if their caring responsibilities prevented them from being able to work and pay national insurance contributions in the normal way.
You may also be eligible for help with housing costs.
Seek benefits advice
However, it is important to get benefits advice before you claim these benefits, as the person you're caring for could lose Severe Disability Premium if you claim Carer's Allowance or Universal Credit Carer Element.
You can use our Find an Adviser to find local benefits experts.
If you are a carer, financial and other support might be available from a charitable fund, if you meet its qualifying rules.
Examples of charitable funds that might help carers include those that support people:
Have or are caring for someone with a particular health condition, such as the MS Society
An educational charity that helps families on low incomes pay for school trips or outings
A charitable trust attached to a water or electricity company.
Help from the local council
If you are caring for someone, help may be available to you from your local council department specifically to meet your needs as a carer.
All carers have the right to a Carer's Assessment of their needs, although what sort of assessment, who does it, who pays for the services and your associated rights to support depend on the type of carer you are.
Carer's UK guide to Carer's Assessments (Please look at the information for the country of the UK that you live in.)
The following carers' charities may be able to give you more information and support: